• Crusader Kings III Available Now!

    The realm rejoices as Paradox Interactive announces the launch of Crusader Kings III, the latest entry in the publisher’s grand strategy role-playing game franchise. Advisors may now jockey for positions of influence and adversaries should save their schemes for another day, because on this day Crusader Kings III can be purchased on Steam, the Paradox Store, and other major online retailers.


    Real Strategy Requires Cunning

MastahCheef117

Genro
44 Badges
Jul 1, 2009
1.162
73
  • Arsenal of Democracy
  • Rome: Vae Victis
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Ship Simulator Extremes
  • Sengoku
  • Semper Fi
  • Rome Gold
  • March of the Eagles
  • Hearts of Iron III: Their Finest Hour
  • Hearts of Iron III
  • For the Motherland
  • Divine Wind
  • Europa Universalis III
  • Hearts of Iron II: Armageddon
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
  • Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: Rajas of India
  • Crusader Kings II: The Republic
  • Crusader Kings II: Sunset Invasion
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
  • Darkest Hour
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Crusader Kings II: Sons of Abraham
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Prison Architect
  • Stellaris: Apocalypse
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Death or Dishonor
  • Europa Universalis IV: Rights of Man
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Cadet
  • Stellaris
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Mount & Blade: Warband
  • Pride of Nations
  • 500k Club
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Victoria 2
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Cities: Skylines
  • Stellaris - Path to Destruction bundle
Prosperity through Peace Alone
Germany After the Great War, 1933 –


Greetings and welcome. I intend, in the following updates, to relay to you, the reader, a fascinating story of “what could have been.”

In this AAR we shall witness the continuing survival of the Weimar Republic – the sickly child of Europe, an unstable and unsure creation of the Treaty of Versailles – in the face of the most dangerous enemies to the German nation, both from without and within. The Germany of our timeline must overcome the crushing debt and unemployment that the Great Depression brought to the world; she must stabilize herself politically and ensure the defeat of the Reich's domestic enemies; and she must secure for herself – and all democratic nations, if it comes to it – a free world devoid of that foul scourge that is communism.

I will be using Mixed Mod on DH v1.03. All difficulty levels will be set to normal. IC takeover will be on. I will be writing in a “textbook” format/style; forgive me if my narration grows boring or the like. Germany will remain democratic – but for how long exactly, we shall have to wait and see.


Prosperity can come through peace alone. The German people are in favor of all possible means to make war impossible …. I have seen three wars. A man who has seen three wars never will wish another war. He must be a friend of peace.”
-- Paul von Hindenburg

INDEX
PART I: THE FEDERAL ELECTION OF 1933
PART II: THE BAVARIAN REVOLUTION
PART III: A PLACE IN THE SUN
PART IV: THE HITLER-WELS DUEL
PART V: THE LAST GASP OF ARTICLE 160
PART VI: A HIGHWAY FOR THE PEOPLE
PART VII: MODERATION IS NO VIRTUE
PART VIII: THE DOMINO EFFECT
PART IX: THE PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION OF 1934
PART X: THE AUGUST REVOLUTION
PART XI: HEIL DIR IM SIEGERKRANZ
PART XII: DIE KAISERLICHE MARINE
PART XIII: THE SAAR PLEBISCITE
PART XIV: THE FRENCH RIOTS OF 1935 AND THE GREAT GAMBLE
PART XV: THE HAPPY MONTHS
PART XVI: THE WIRTH GOVERNMENT
PART XVII: THE MOSLEY AFFAIR
PART XVIII: THE SECOND ITALO-ETHIOPIAN WAR
PART XIX: THE YEAR OF GOOD FEELINGS AND LARGE ARMIES
PART XX: A ROSE BY ANY OTHER NAME
PART XXI: A MOST NATURAL POLITICAL UNION
PART XXII: THE NIGHT OF THE LONG KNIVES
PART XXIII: THE PEOPLE'S REPUBLIC
PART XXIV: THE RAEDER DOCTRINE
PART XXV: THE CHOSEN ONES
PART XXVI: THE CRISIS ON THE RHINE
PART XXVII: A NEW FINLAND
PART XXVIII: THE FINAL DAYS OF THE WIRTH GOVERNMENT
PART XXIX: THE CORRIDOR, PART I
PART XXX: THE CORRIDOR, PART II


BONUS
THE BATTLE OF TANNENBERG
THE GREAT CLASH AT JUTLAND
EL FIN DE LA RESTAURACIÓN BORBÓNICA
THE PUTSCH
 
Last edited:

Mikkel Glahder

Robespierre Reborn
47 Badges
Jun 27, 2012
1.204
45
  • Cities in Motion
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Semper Fi
  • Europa Universalis IV: Res Publica
  • March of the Eagles
  • Heir to the Throne
  • Hearts of Iron III: Their Finest Hour
  • Hearts of Iron III
  • For the Motherland
  • Europa Universalis IV: Call to arms event
  • Europa Universalis IV: Wealth of Nations
  • Europa Universalis IV: Conquest of Paradise
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Divine Wind
  • Europa Universalis III: Chronicles
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Crusader Kings II: Charlemagne
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
  • Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Crusader Kings II: Rajas of India
  • Crusader Kings II: The Republic
  • Crusader Kings II: Sons of Abraham
  • Crusader Kings II: Sunset Invasion
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
  • Darkest Hour
  • Europa Universalis III
  • Crusader Kings II: Holy Fury
  • Hearts of Iron IV Sign-up
  • Stellaris
  • Stellaris Sign-up
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Cadet
  • Crusader Kings II: Reapers Due
  • Europa Universalis IV: Rights of Man
  • Crusader Kings II: Monks and Mystics
  • Shadowrun Returns
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Mount & Blade: Warband
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • 500k Club
  • Warlock 2: The Exiled
  • Victoria 2
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
subbed.
 

MastahCheef117

Genro
44 Badges
Jul 1, 2009
1.162
73
  • Arsenal of Democracy
  • Rome: Vae Victis
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Ship Simulator Extremes
  • Sengoku
  • Semper Fi
  • Rome Gold
  • March of the Eagles
  • Hearts of Iron III: Their Finest Hour
  • Hearts of Iron III
  • For the Motherland
  • Divine Wind
  • Europa Universalis III
  • Hearts of Iron II: Armageddon
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
  • Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: Rajas of India
  • Crusader Kings II: The Republic
  • Crusader Kings II: Sunset Invasion
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
  • Darkest Hour
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Crusader Kings II: Sons of Abraham
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Prison Architect
  • Stellaris: Apocalypse
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Death or Dishonor
  • Europa Universalis IV: Rights of Man
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Cadet
  • Stellaris
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Mount & Blade: Warband
  • Pride of Nations
  • 500k Club
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Victoria 2
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Cities: Skylines
  • Stellaris - Path to Destruction bundle
PART I: THE FEDERAL ELECTION OF 1933


The Weimar Republic was, at the beginning of 1933, in rather dire straits: the economy was being hit harder than ever by the effects of the Great Depression from which, it seemed, no country could escape.

The failure of the government in combating runaway inflation and the devastatingly high unemployment rate in the wake of the stock market crash in 1929 resulted in a surge of votes in favor of the National Socialist Party, led by Adolf Hitler. In just four years under Hitler's leadership (May 1928 to July 1932), the Nazis went from 12 seats in the Reichstag and 810,000 votes to 230 seats and almost 14,000,000 votes.

The failure, however, of the party's taking a majority of seats in the Reichstag forced them to call for new elections in September of that year; Chancellor Franz von Papen had ruled effectively only through the blessing of President Hindenburg and without the support of the Reichstag, which was technically in violation of the Weimar Constitution. A coalition between the Nazis, Centrists, and DNVP (nationalists) had failed because Hitler demanded fervently the Chancellorship. It was not just the Nazis, however, who were disaffected by Papen's rule; the whole of the Reichstag had issued a vote of no confidence on the Chancellor, thereby forcing him to dissolve the Reichstag. New elections were slated for November.



Franz von Papen thought he could control Hitler and use his influence throughout the country to shore up his own support; he was wrong.

The Nazis therein lost several seats but maintained their plurality of votes, and when Papen found himself unable to form a government, he resigned. While there were loud cries by the public to make Hitler the Chancellor of the Reich, President Hindenburg instead gave that position to Kurt von Schleicher, then the Minister of Defense (whose title he took concurrently with that of Chancellor). Schleicher, though not a Nazi himself, viewed them as allies to a certain degree, fearing that their collapse or defeat in future elections would “not [be] in the best interests of the German state”. Furthermore, he hoped that, by gaining the support of the Nazis, he could legitimize the authority of the ailing German Republic in the eyes of the frustrated, tired, and financially troubled German people. To this end, Schleicher hoped on forming a semi-authoritative, but participatory, Reichstag in which all parties joined in a national coalition; his beliefs in the possibility of forming such a government were strengthened by Nazi in-fighting following their loss of seats in the November elections.

Schleicher offered to Gregor Strasser (leader of the left wing of the Nazi Party) the ability to restore an independent Prussian government and make him Minister-President; it was through this action he hoped to further divide the Nazis and force Hitler to throw his support to the Chancellor's government. Despite Strasser's (and, secretly, Schleicher's) efforts, Hitler coalesced the party around him, crushing the Chancellor's dreams for receiving the Nazi's support in the government. Though Strasser still maintained a following in the party, the majority supported Hitler, confirming his leadership of the Nazis.

However, the previous Chancellor, though no longer holding political office, still maintained momentous power. Franz von Papen was urging President Hindenburg to remove Schleicher from office at the first chance and to give the office to Hitler himself, forming a majority government with the DNVP, with which Papen hoped to limit Hitler's more extreme excesses. The power of the President had increased rapidly in recent years, and whomever the President threw his support behind generally meant the political damnation of the opposition; thus, when President Hindenburg ordered a leading German delegate (General Werner von Blomberg) of the World Disarmament Conference to return to Germany without conferencing with Schleicher about the move, the man knew his government was doomed. By late January 1933 many high-ranking Reichswehr officers were asking that Hindenburg replace Schleicher with Hitler. The Chancellor tried throwing his support to a Hitler government (with the hopes of being made Minister of Defense in his cabinet) but his actions were in vain. On January 30 Hindenburg removed Schleicher from office and called Hitler to replace him. Thus, the nascent Nazi Party had effectively gained control of Germany, an event called the Machtergreifung (seizure of power).


President Hindenburg and the new Chancellor of Germany, Adolf Hitler, on February 1, 1933.

Just several days later, however, the leadership of the political parties received a shock. Shortly after Hitler declared his intentions to form a new Reichstag under the auspices of an upcoming election (slated for March 5 after Hindenburg gave his approval), violence broke out against the Nazis' great political enemies. KPD (Communist Party) offices in major cities were bombed, trade union leaders were assaulted and even in some cases murdered; Ernst Thalmann, leader of the KPD, had his house destroyed by arson on February 10. Prominent KPD officials and well-known supporters were visited by Nazi supporters and officials and were intimidated and in many cases attacked. By February 17 this violence had extended to members of the SPD (Socialist Democratic Party) and even some Centrists. Twenty newspapers, supporting both Centre and BVP (Bavarian People's Party) policies, were banned for their vehement criticism of Hitler's cabinet. Brownshirts were seen to have broken up Centre Party meetings in Westphalia and elsewhere.


In one of the more extreme cases: a business belonging to a socialist had its windows broken, Berlin.

These actions forced Otto Wels (leader of the SPD), Ludwig Kaas (leader of the Centre Party), and others to mobilize their supporters to oust Hitler in the upcoming elections. Already several hundred thousand communists were now going to pledge their support to the more moderate SPD; a handful of Nazis were similarly disgusted by the violence their party colleagues were perpetrating, and were going to throw their support either to the Centre Party or the DNVP. Alfred Hugenberg (leader of the DNVP), though initially supporting Hitler's policies and actions, was disgusted when several DNVP officials were attacked by Brownshirts for opposing several of Hitler's policies, and was similarly unsatisfied with Hitler's personal apology. Kaas, Wels, and Hugenberg all appealed to Hindenburg to publicly denounce the violence committed by Nazis (though Hugenberg was less than thrilled to be in the ranks with the SPD), collectively calling it “an attempt at political intimidation to seize control of the Reich and an affront to the German national spirit”. Hindenburg, fearing the violence might break out into death and widespread riots, thus chastised Hitler the next day in a national radio broadcast, though using slightly less inflammatory language. This further sapped the Nazis' strength.

There were two events which are regarded to having had the greatest effects on the outcome of the 1933 election, however. The first involved a letter sent from retired General Erich Ludendorff to President Hindenburg. A veteran and hero of the Great War, Ludendorff had, interestingly enough, supported both the Kapp Putsch and Hitler's own Beer Hall Putsch of 1923. He had represented the German Voelkisch Freedon Party (DVFP) in the Reichstag in the 1920s which espoused anti-Semitic rhetoric. However, he had become disillusioned with Hitler's track record of violence (political and physical) against his fellow countrymen. Just weeks before the scheduled election in March, Ludendorff wrote a letter to the President, which contained, among other things, this particularly scathing passage, directed towards both Hitler and the President:

By appointing Hitler Chancellor of the Reich, you have handed over our sacred German Fatherland to one of the greatest demagogues of all time. I prophesy to you that this man will plunge our Reich into the abyss and will inflict immeasurable woe on our nation. Future generations will curse you in your grave for this action.”[1]

This letter was read by Oskar, Hindenburg's son, who was a major in the Heer (Army), and a noted opponent of Hitler who had disagreed strongly with his father's making the Nazi leader Chancellor. He had similarly admired Ludendorff as a national hero (though, perhaps, not to the extent he did his father), and was overjoyed that the two men shared an opinion regarding Hitler. He made copies of this letter and distributed it to several key high-ranking officers in the Reichswehr, including Major General Walther von Brauchitsch, General of the Infantry Gerd von Rundstedt, Lieutenant General Wilhelm Ritter von Leeb (who had fought the Nazis during the Beer Hall Putsch), Admiral Erich Raeder, Rear Admiral Otto Schultze, and Captain Alfred Saalwächter, all of whom were notable for having been vehemently anti-Nazi, or at least indifferent to them. These officers, and many more, were persuaded by Ludendorff's writing and, witnessing the break-down of law in the many instances of Nazi-instigated political violence, urged the President in their own letters to publicly denounce Hitler and his party in the upcoming election. Furthermore, Oskar had relayed to these officers that he had been notified of his father's correspondence with Wels: the SPD would, in an act to begin circumventing the Versailles Treaty and to combat unemployment, support military expansion[2]. If any of these key officers had refused to oppose the Nazis or support the non-Nazi parties, this was the action that finally convinced them. The majority of the military, unbeknownst to Hitler, was now firmly against the Nazis.


Lieutenant General von Leeb was perhaps the most influential anti-Nazi officer in the Reichswehr, swaying many officers to oppose Hitler and urge President Hindenburg to oppose the Chancellor's initiatives.

The second great event to occur before the March elections was what eventually became known as the Reichstag fire. On February 27 the Reichstag was nearly completely gutted by a fire, despite the best efforts of the local fire department. Hitler, Hermann Göring, Joseph Goebbels, and other high-ranking Nazis believed the fire to have been ordered by the leadership of the KPD and carried out by the Dutch expatriate Marinun van der Lubbe, who was arrested for the arson. Hitler and the Nazi members of the Reichstag urged the passage of a bill that would restrict the civil liberties of the German people in the face of “a danger to the state and nation”. Knowing that this would result in almost fully-legal political persecution of the SPD and other non-Nazi parties, Otto Wels mobilized support of other Reichstag officials to petition President Hindenburg to strike down the bill and prevent the usurpation of complete political authority in the Reich by the Nazis. On March 1, Hindenburg granted their requests, thereby killing the Reichstag Fire Decree. Hitler, infuriated, declared the Socialists and Communists in the Reichstag as “traitors to the Reich and the volk”.

With millions of communists flocking to the SPD and significant numbers of Nazis rallying to the banner of the DNVP (whose leader begrudgingly agreed to not throw his support behind Hitler), an election that initially seemed an easy win for the National Socialists now seemed to have been thrown up into the air. The KPD, though bleeding membership badly, was still active. The SPD's numbers swelled, as did the Centre Party's and DNVP's on a smaller scale, and the BVP more readily contested the election in Bavaria, which now was virtually entirely split between the BVP and Nazi electorate.

When election day came, the contest was fierce. Brownshirts were out in force, though perhaps not as obviously as in the last month, and attempted to intimidate voters; however, Hindenburg, holding “supreme command over the armed forces”, deployed Army and military police units to several polling places, urging local government officials to order local police forces to do the same. Thus, the political violence perpetrated by the Nazis in the month before the election could not be committed as effectively on the day of the election.


The March 5, 1933 federal election results: NSDAP (brown) 185 seats; SPD (bright red) 198 seats; KPD (dark red) 24 seats; Centre Party (sky blue) 73 seats; DNVP (dark blue) 64 seats; BVP (light blue) 23 seats.

The results were shocking to the whole country. The Nazis not only failed, yet again, to achieve a majority, but they actually ceded the plurality of seats to the Socialists. Though Ernst Thalmann was upset by just how many seats the KPD lost, he was pleased that the Nazis were defeated again and that “the people's will was finally heard”. Hitler was, unsurprisingly, infuriated, calling the election a “sham” and a fabrication of the “anti-German leftists” and refused to recognize the results of the election. President Hindenburg used this as a pretext to remove Hitler from office the next day, officially announcing that Otto Wels was to be the next Chancellor of the Weimar Republic. He formed what soon became known as the “Grand Coalition” or the “National Coalition” (Nazis and some Nationalists referred to it as the “Anti-Reich Coalition”) composed of the SPD, Centre Party, and BVP. Hugenberg, though opposed to Hitler's policies and “his demagogue ways”, joined the Nazis in opposition.


The reaction by the public was immense. Many celebrated the victory of “democracy” and the continued survival of the German Republic. However, not all were so enthusiastic. Millions of NSDAP supporters were perhaps more infuriated than Hitler himself. Hundreds of thousands, particularly in Bavaria, were supported by members of the DNVP in protest. Police struggled to control the protests and prevent them from breaking out into riots, but soon they devolved into pure violence, and gunfighting broke out between the Bavarian state police and the protestors. Dozens of Nazi members in the Reichstag called it the “people's national uprising” and openly supported an overthrow of the Bavarian state government. President Hindenburg ordered the mobilization of the 5th and 7th Infantry Divisions in Bavaria (under the commands of Mj. General von Stülpnagel and Lt. General Hermann Hoth, respectively) to deal with the violent riots in Nuremburg and Munich, where now thousands of Nazis traveled in an attempt to join the fight against what they perceived as the decrepit Republic. Against Hitler's urging, members of the Nazi leadership assumed control of the rioters and declared a national uprising. The two cities were now undergoing the process of open rebellion in their streets, with the Reichsheer deploying as quickly as possible to combat the armed and very dangerous Nazi and Nationalist revolutionaries.


Nationalist and Nazi paramilitaries cordon off a street in Munich in their attempts to seize control of the city, March 1933.

[1] Yes, I know that this letter is almost assuredly fabricated and not real; I thought it would be interesting to use it, however, and to further the narrative of the result of the 1933 elections.

[2] This move was most probably taken to win the support of the Reichswehr and possibly to sap the strength of the leftist Nazis and members of the DNVP.
 

General Awesome1234

Major
22 Badges
Jul 13, 2015
549
136
  • Arsenal of Democracy
  • Darkest Hour
  • For the Motherland
  • Hearts of Iron III
  • Victoria: Revolutions
  • Semper Fi
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Expansion Pass
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Expansion Pass
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Death or Dishonor
  • Cities: Skylines - Mass Transit
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Together for Victory
  • Cities: Skylines - Natural Disasters
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Cadet
  • Stellaris
  • Pillars of Eternity
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Cities: Skylines
  • Victoria 2
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
I have never seen a democratic Germany AAR before!

Crush the Nazis!
 

LatinKaiser

It's faster horses...
51 Badges
Mar 29, 2014
1.638
1.509
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Cadet
  • Victoria 2
  • War of the Roses
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Crusader Kings II: Horse Lords
  • Europa Universalis IV: Cossacks
  • Crusader Kings II: Conclave
  • Stellaris
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Crusader Kings II: Reapers Due
  • Europa Universalis IV: Rights of Man
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Together for Victory
  • Crusader Kings II: Monks and Mystics
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Death or Dishonor
  • Europa Universalis IV: Cradle of Civilization
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Expansion Pass
  • Europa Universalis IV: Dharma
  • Crusader Kings II: Holy Fury
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Europa Universalis IV: Wealth of Nations
  • For the Motherland
  • Hearts of Iron III
  • March of the Eagles
  • Europa Universalis IV: Res Publica
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Europa Universalis IV: Conquest of Paradise
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Crusader Kings II: Rajas of India
  • Crusader Kings II: The Republic
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
  • Crusader Kings II: Sons of Abraham
  • Crusader Kings II: Charlemagne
  • Crusader Kings II: Sunset Invasion
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
  • Darkest Hour
  • Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods
  • Europa Universalis IV: Third Rome
This AAR promises to be incredibly entertaining! Subbed. :)
 

Milites

Not a Sahib
20 Badges
Nov 25, 2007
2.182
179
  • Deus Vult
  • Europa Universalis IV: Res Publica
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Heir to the Throne
  • For The Glory
  • Europa Universalis IV: Call to arms event
  • Europa Universalis IV: Wealth of Nations
  • Europa Universalis IV: Conquest of Paradise
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Europa Universalis III
  • Darkest Hour
  • 500k Club
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Europa Universalis IV: Cossacks
  • Europa Universalis IV: Rights of Man
  • Europa Universalis IV: Mandate of Heaven
  • Europa Universalis IV: Cradle of Civilization
  • Europa Universalis IV: Third Rome
Onwards for German freedom and German greatness!
 

oxfordroyale

A Model Modern Major General
22 Badges
Mar 26, 2013
627
37
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
  • Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: The Republic
  • Crusader Kings II: Sons of Abraham
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Crusader Kings III
  • Crusader Kings II: Holy Fury
  • Crusader Kings II: Reapers Due
  • Hearts of Iron IV Sign-up
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Cities: Skylines
  • Victoria 2
  • Semper Fi
  • Hearts of Iron III: Their Finest Hour
  • Hearts of Iron III
  • For the Motherland
  • Darkest Hour
  • Crusader Kings II: Charlemagne
Very interested. I will be following!
 

Dr.Livingstone

His Most Majestic and Royal Comrade
55 Badges
Jan 29, 2014
1.846
448
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Magicka
  • Europa Universalis IV: Res Publica
  • Victoria: Revolutions
  • Semper Fi
  • Sengoku
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Rome: Vae Victis
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Cities: Skylines - Parklife Pre-Order
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Expansion Pass
  • Crusader Kings II: Jade Dragon
  • Cities: Skylines - Green Cities
  • Age of Wonders III
  • Cities: Skylines
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Cities: Skylines - Parklife
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Crusader Kings II: Horse Lords
  • Crusader Kings II: Conclave
  • Stellaris
  • Hearts of Iron IV Sign-up
  • Stellaris Sign-up
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Cadet
  • Crusader Kings II: Reapers Due
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Together for Victory
  • Crusader Kings II: Monks and Mystics
  • Crusader Kings II: Holy Fury
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Prison Architect
  • Victoria 2
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Expansion Pass
  • Hearts of Iron III Collection
  • Hearts of Iron III: Their Finest Hour
  • Hearts of Iron III
  • Crusader Kings II: Charlemagne
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
  • Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: Rajas of India
  • Crusader Kings II: The Republic
  • Crusader Kings II: Sons of Abraham
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
  • Darkest Hour
  • Europa Universalis III
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Europa Universalis IV: Conquest of Paradise
Subbed.
 

MastahCheef117

Genro
44 Badges
Jul 1, 2009
1.162
73
  • Arsenal of Democracy
  • Rome: Vae Victis
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Ship Simulator Extremes
  • Sengoku
  • Semper Fi
  • Rome Gold
  • March of the Eagles
  • Hearts of Iron III: Their Finest Hour
  • Hearts of Iron III
  • For the Motherland
  • Divine Wind
  • Europa Universalis III
  • Hearts of Iron II: Armageddon
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
  • Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: Rajas of India
  • Crusader Kings II: The Republic
  • Crusader Kings II: Sunset Invasion
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
  • Darkest Hour
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Crusader Kings II: Sons of Abraham
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Prison Architect
  • Stellaris: Apocalypse
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Death or Dishonor
  • Europa Universalis IV: Rights of Man
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Cadet
  • Stellaris
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Mount & Blade: Warband
  • Pride of Nations
  • 500k Club
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Victoria 2
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Cities: Skylines
  • Stellaris - Path to Destruction bundle
PART II: THE BAVARIAN REVOLUTION

Otto Wels was barely in office for one full week before the protests in Nuremburg and Munich turned into full-blown rebellions. President Hindenburg, assured that his lack of partiality to Hitler's Nazis was now entirely justified, ordered Lieutenant General Hoth to rapidly deploy units of his 7th Infantry Division into the streets of Munich to put down the uprising on March 7. The police were struggling to deal with the Nazis (who were supported by some Nationalist Freikorps soldiers) and casualties were rapidly mounting in both cities. General von Stülpnagel quickly readied several battalions of infantry and ordered them into Nuremburg, where the police was on the verge of breaking. They reached the city outskirts on the morning of March 8.

The first days of the protests (and later, riots) were marked not only by conflict between the Nazis and the police, but between the Nazis and communist/socialist supporters of the government as well. In fact, the first man killed as a result of the post-election violence was a communist sympathizer in Munich, who was shot by a local Nazi official amid a heated confrontation between a group of their respective camps.


Communist supporters in Munich the day after protests started; startled bystanders on the right look on. Protestors like these sought to help the police in whatever fashion they could, but interestingly their presence only increased the rate at which order collapsed in the two cities.

Though the number of militants in Munich numbered just under 2,000, they fought with a tenacity not unlike that seen during the Revolution in 1919. The Nuremburg rebels were more numerous, at roughly 3,000 in number. The Nazis in Munich had seized a Freikorps armory on the outskirts of the city before the arrival of Hoth's men; thus they were in possession of mortars and other heavy equipment. Not only did this ruin several city streets entirely in the fighting that followed, but it caused numerous civilian casualties as well.


Flag of the rebels in Nuremburg; the rebels in Munich did not have a unified symbol. This flag was similarly used by the Freikorps and the nationalists during the Revolution of 1919 and the Kapp Putsch.

Hoth had hesitated to bring in light artillery and mortars, but ordered them used on March 15 when progress against the rebels had slowed considerably. Similarly, to the north in Nuremburg, von Stülpnagel (whose casualties were much higher than Hoth's) ordered the use of artillery after local Nazi officers declared they were fighting to the death to “protect the spirit of the German people”. Stülpnagel posted an open letter to the rebels asking for immediate surrender; they all vehemently refused. Similarly, the Munich rebels resolved themselves to fight to the death.

The reactions across the Reich to what was rapidly becoming known as the “Bavarian Revolution” or, as The Times called it, “the greatest European social and political upheaval in over a decade,” were great indeed. While a majority of the Nazi Party and their supporters denounced the revolution (more on the basis of saving their strength for the next federal elections than on principle), including Hitler himself, many Nazis nonetheless declared their support for the revolutionaries. There were far fewer Nationalists taking part in the rebellion, and they drew even less support from their allies in the Reichstag, as they were not willing to throw their support away before the next election (at the urging of Hugenberg). Liberals, conservatives, and socialists alike were abhorred by the violence and images of destruction and death, with photographs of both combat and the bodies of innocent civilians published and republished in national magazines and newspapers (many of which were only recently un-banned under Wels' administration).


A demonstration against the Bavarian “revolution” outside the Reichstag, March 1933.

The street fighting in both cities was ferocious. General Hoth (assuming temporary command over General von Stülpnagel as well) ordered whole streets evacuated of civilians when the fighting drew near; he established civilian areas outside the cities where temporary housing, plumbing, and food were provided. Despite this, casualties (including civilian deaths) continued to mount in both cities. In some cases, the rebels would take whole families as hostages; this only increased the number of casualties. By the time Munich was declared secure on March 25, over 3,000 civilians had been killed or wounded in that city. Rebel casualties numbered 1,900; Army casualties numbered 105 and included a small field howitzer destroyed by a stick of dynamite.

The fighting in Nuremburg continued for several more days, with the desperation of fighting only getting worse as time went on. General Stülpnagel ordered a hard push by his men, committing his final infantry reserves[1] and ordering large sections of the city to evacuate to allow for a general sweep against the enemy positions. Businesses across the city closed their doors (temporarily) as fears of a general insurgency began to spread; people stayed inside their homes all day in fear of being shot by a rebel or Army sniper. The mayor and his motorcade were attacked one day while taking a trip to von Stülpnagel's headquarters; seven policemen died and only two of the attackers were killed in return. Casualties all around were far higher than in Munich; by the time the fighting was done on March 29, over 4,500 civilians were killed or wounded. The Army suffered 459 casualties and lost five pieces of artillery to explosives and debris. The rebels suffered over 2,500 dead and wounded (including those that surrendered). Soldat (Private) Karl Voigt described, in his journal, in vivid detail what much of the public saw in the national papers:

In the last days the fighting became more intense. The Nazis fought for every room even when they had just a few bullets left. In the more dangerous sectors of the city it was not uncommon to see huge piles of rubble next to several assorted bodies – mostly Nazis, sometimes soldiers, too often women or children. When they took refuge in the cellars or the top floors of buildings, the captain ordered mortars brought down on their heads. The plunging fire put huge gaping holes in the roof. In the last building I cleared, there was ferocious fighting until the last floor. When we ascended the stairs we found the bodies of seven of them, all killed by self-inflicted gunshots.”

Both the President and Chancellor wrote personal letters to both Hoth and von Stülpnagel for their thanks in upholding the rule of law; but it was von Stülpnagel who received praise not only from the highest political leaders but from the press and the public, too. Stories quickly circulated both the papers and by tongue of the dashing general having shielded young children and women with his body when bullets flew past; and one particular story related his bravery in fighting the Nazis with his bare hands[2].


Major General von Stülpnagel, commander of the 5th Infantry Division, who oversaw the destruction of the Nuremburg rebellion and became a beloved general by both the press and the public.

The repercussions of these two minor rebellions – aside from the cost of damages and the loss of lives – were monumental. Hitler had temporarily lost control over his whole party, with several delegates from the Reichstag itself committing their resources and even their lives to the fighting. The Nazis' support in Bavaria had effectively been either disenfranchised from the fighting or annihilated altogether. Across the Reich, the Nazis were increasingly viewed as perpetrators of chaos, death, and destruction. It could only be inferred that the Nazis would suffer an even greater defeat in the next federal election.

However, the rebellions in Bavaria were not the only major events to occur immediately after the election. Even before the elections of 1932 and 1933, the German government had been rather unfaithful in her obligations to the Allied Powers according to the Treaty of Versailles, and this was shown to the world in no better way than on April 1.

[1] As all Army divisions were under-strength and not completely mobilized, von Stülpnagel's 5th Division numbered, in total, just over 10,000 men at the start of the fighting.

[2] Carl-Heinrich von Stülpnagel was historically similarly courageous, at least at the end of his life: he participated in the failed July 20th plot to assassinate Hitler. His part in the operation was to arrest all SS and Gestapo officers in Paris; when it failed, he tried to kill himself. He was executed in August.
 
Last edited:

MastahCheef117

Genro
44 Badges
Jul 1, 2009
1.162
73
  • Arsenal of Democracy
  • Rome: Vae Victis
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Ship Simulator Extremes
  • Sengoku
  • Semper Fi
  • Rome Gold
  • March of the Eagles
  • Hearts of Iron III: Their Finest Hour
  • Hearts of Iron III
  • For the Motherland
  • Divine Wind
  • Europa Universalis III
  • Hearts of Iron II: Armageddon
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
  • Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: Rajas of India
  • Crusader Kings II: The Republic
  • Crusader Kings II: Sunset Invasion
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
  • Darkest Hour
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Crusader Kings II: Sons of Abraham
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Prison Architect
  • Stellaris: Apocalypse
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Death or Dishonor
  • Europa Universalis IV: Rights of Man
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Cadet
  • Stellaris
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Mount & Blade: Warband
  • Pride of Nations
  • 500k Club
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Victoria 2
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Cities: Skylines
  • Stellaris - Path to Destruction bundle
Thank you all for the subs!

@GeneralAwesome1234: I'd say they were pretty crushed, wouldn't you? ;)

@LatinKaiser: I try. I try really hard.

@Milites: Oh, yeah... on for... democracy, or... whatever... I guess... :D
 

Dr.Livingstone

His Most Majestic and Royal Comrade
55 Badges
Jan 29, 2014
1.846
448
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Magicka
  • Europa Universalis IV: Res Publica
  • Victoria: Revolutions
  • Semper Fi
  • Sengoku
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Rome: Vae Victis
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Cities: Skylines - Parklife Pre-Order
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Expansion Pass
  • Crusader Kings II: Jade Dragon
  • Cities: Skylines - Green Cities
  • Age of Wonders III
  • Cities: Skylines
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Cities: Skylines - Parklife
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Crusader Kings II: Horse Lords
  • Crusader Kings II: Conclave
  • Stellaris
  • Hearts of Iron IV Sign-up
  • Stellaris Sign-up
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Cadet
  • Crusader Kings II: Reapers Due
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Together for Victory
  • Crusader Kings II: Monks and Mystics
  • Crusader Kings II: Holy Fury
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Prison Architect
  • Victoria 2
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Expansion Pass
  • Hearts of Iron III Collection
  • Hearts of Iron III: Their Finest Hour
  • Hearts of Iron III
  • Crusader Kings II: Charlemagne
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
  • Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: Rajas of India
  • Crusader Kings II: The Republic
  • Crusader Kings II: Sons of Abraham
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
  • Darkest Hour
  • Europa Universalis III
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Europa Universalis IV: Conquest of Paradise
It's good to see Stülpnagel get his due.
 

MastahCheef117

Genro
44 Badges
Jul 1, 2009
1.162
73
  • Arsenal of Democracy
  • Rome: Vae Victis
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Ship Simulator Extremes
  • Sengoku
  • Semper Fi
  • Rome Gold
  • March of the Eagles
  • Hearts of Iron III: Their Finest Hour
  • Hearts of Iron III
  • For the Motherland
  • Divine Wind
  • Europa Universalis III
  • Hearts of Iron II: Armageddon
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
  • Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: Rajas of India
  • Crusader Kings II: The Republic
  • Crusader Kings II: Sunset Invasion
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
  • Darkest Hour
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Crusader Kings II: Sons of Abraham
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Prison Architect
  • Stellaris: Apocalypse
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Death or Dishonor
  • Europa Universalis IV: Rights of Man
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Cadet
  • Stellaris
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Mount & Blade: Warband
  • Pride of Nations
  • 500k Club
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Victoria 2
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Cities: Skylines
  • Stellaris - Path to Destruction bundle
I've also forgotten to mention that I've written far ahead of the update. I have about 14 more updates ready to post, but I will spread the frequency of the updates out as I will be going off to college soon.

I'm also experiencing a power outage so I can't continue playing or writing until it comes back. Oops.
 

General Awesome1234

Major
22 Badges
Jul 13, 2015
549
136
  • Arsenal of Democracy
  • Darkest Hour
  • For the Motherland
  • Hearts of Iron III
  • Victoria: Revolutions
  • Semper Fi
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Expansion Pass
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Expansion Pass
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Death or Dishonor
  • Cities: Skylines - Mass Transit
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Together for Victory
  • Cities: Skylines - Natural Disasters
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Cadet
  • Stellaris
  • Pillars of Eternity
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Cities: Skylines
  • Victoria 2
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
Great!

(about the updates, not the power outage)
 

MastahCheef117

Genro
44 Badges
Jul 1, 2009
1.162
73
  • Arsenal of Democracy
  • Rome: Vae Victis
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Ship Simulator Extremes
  • Sengoku
  • Semper Fi
  • Rome Gold
  • March of the Eagles
  • Hearts of Iron III: Their Finest Hour
  • Hearts of Iron III
  • For the Motherland
  • Divine Wind
  • Europa Universalis III
  • Hearts of Iron II: Armageddon
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
  • Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: Rajas of India
  • Crusader Kings II: The Republic
  • Crusader Kings II: Sunset Invasion
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
  • Darkest Hour
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Crusader Kings II: Sons of Abraham
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Prison Architect
  • Stellaris: Apocalypse
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Death or Dishonor
  • Europa Universalis IV: Rights of Man
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Cadet
  • Stellaris
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Mount & Blade: Warband
  • Pride of Nations
  • 500k Club
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Victoria 2
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Cities: Skylines
  • Stellaris - Path to Destruction bundle
Update: power has been restored.

Expect part III Friday or Saturday (probably Saturday).
 
Last edited:

MastahCheef117

Genro
44 Badges
Jul 1, 2009
1.162
73
  • Arsenal of Democracy
  • Rome: Vae Victis
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Ship Simulator Extremes
  • Sengoku
  • Semper Fi
  • Rome Gold
  • March of the Eagles
  • Hearts of Iron III: Their Finest Hour
  • Hearts of Iron III
  • For the Motherland
  • Divine Wind
  • Europa Universalis III
  • Hearts of Iron II: Armageddon
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
  • Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: Rajas of India
  • Crusader Kings II: The Republic
  • Crusader Kings II: Sunset Invasion
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
  • Darkest Hour
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Crusader Kings II: Sons of Abraham
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Prison Architect
  • Stellaris: Apocalypse
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Death or Dishonor
  • Europa Universalis IV: Rights of Man
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Cadet
  • Stellaris
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Mount & Blade: Warband
  • Pride of Nations
  • 500k Club
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Victoria 2
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Cities: Skylines
  • Stellaris - Path to Destruction bundle
PART III: A PLACE IN THE SUN

The so-called “pocket battleships”, or Panzerschiffe (armored ships), were Weimar Germany's attempt to circumvent the damaging naval clauses of the Treaty of Versailles and to restore, at least to some degree, the power of the much-diminished Reichsmarine (Navy).

According to the Treaty, Germany had been limited to possessing just six older dreadnoughts[1] but was now, in 1933, in possession of just three, even older, pre-dreadnoughts. The growing irrelevance and age of the Navy was beginning to show by the late 1920s.



The battleship Schlesien, flagship of the Reichsmarine, here after her modernization in 1932.
The Treaty had restricted the Reichsmarine from ordering and commissioning replacements for ships until they were at least twenty years old; they were able to legally do so by the mid-20s. Several designs were submitted by various companies to replace the aging battleships whose usefulness was rapidly wearing thin. Political opposition to laying down new ships was monumental, especially by the Socialists[2], due to budget constraints and the concerns for employment and the economy over the military; they campaigned in 1928 on the slogan, “Food, not Panzerkreuzer (battleships)”. Still, new designs were submitted and further refined; the ships started to appear as large heavy cruisers, with high top speeds and an extremely powerful armament. After more designs were ruled out, selected, and dropped again, a final design was agreed upon by 1928. The ships were to make 28 knots, and would be armed with six 11 inch (28 cm) guns in two turrets, fore and aft. The first ship, Deutschland, was laid down in February of 1929. Her two sister ships, Admiral Scheer and Admiral Graf Spee[3], were laid down in June, 1931 and October, 1932, respectively. On April 1, Deutschland completed her trials and was officially commissioned into the Navy.


Deutschland deployed into the main squadron of the Navy.

The Deutschland-class armored ships (later re-designated heavy cruisers) were successors to the Königsberg- and Leipzig-class light cruisers, which were the first cruisers built for the Navy with modern post-war designs. Though technically complying with the terms of Versailles that any ships the size of a cruiser or larger must be within 10,000 tons, she weighed in at just over 14,000 tons when fully loaded. Despite this 10,000 ton limit, the other signatories of the Washington Naval Treaty (the Five-Power Treaty of 1922) were only limited to building capital ships of 35,000 tons or less. Many officers in the Navy viewed this as unacceptable, the treaty seen as having purposefully given the Allies the advantage in naval power in the event of war.

The technical loop that the Reichsmarine passed through regarding the tonnage of these new cruisers was only the first of several violations of the military terms of the Treaty of Versailles. The surface fleet of the Navy, ignoring the three pre-dreadnoughts and Deutschland, composed of the four newer light cruisers of the Königsberg- and Leipzig-classes, the much older light cruiser Emden, the ancient Bremen-class light cruiser Berlin from 1902, twelve destroyers built shortly before the end of the war, and fifteen more from even before the conflict. Many of these antiquated ships had not fired their guns in anger in a decade and a half; some never had at all. It was obvious to nearly everyone – perhaps more to some than to others – that the Reichsmarine and, by extension, the Heer, would have to undergo serious programs of modernization and, some dared to suggest, expansion, throughout the rest of the decade.


The cruiser Leipzig was the second-newest ship in the Reichsmarine after Deutschland; though her anti-aircraft armament was weak, her 5.6-inch guns and torpedo tubes could cause trouble for any cruiser.

On April 8, following the national fanfare in reaction to the commissioning ceremony for Deutschland, Admiral Raeder sent a letter to Chancellor Wels who, though a Socialist (which Raeder detested), had previously expressed his wishes to support a stronger military:


.... it is without question that, should a conflict erupt yet again, the effectiveness of the Navy would be less than that of a horsefly; the Diktat (Versailles)[4] has so constricted our ability to defend our coasts and our overseas trade that it must be considered a threat to the Reich itself …. if we are to build ourselves up and assume again the mantle of a great Power, we must push aside the dictates of the foreign Powers and control our own destiny.”

It began to seem that the words of Raeder represented not only himself and most of the Reich's officer corps, but a growing number of citizens as well. Though the militant, expansionist Nazis were defeated in the election, the concept of ignoring the treaty that ended the Great War and again restoring the military strength of Germany began seizing the minds of an increasing number of Germans. Wilhelm II, German Emperor, viewed a strong navy – and a strong military, by extension – as Germany's path toward conquering “a place in the sun”, the country's “undisputed possession”. This sentiment had returned, and would only grow as the years went by.

Appropriately enough, the Navy had actually ordered (and laid down) the keels for two new cruisers – new sister ships to the then-under-construction light cruiser Nürnberg and the currently-serving Leipzig – by April 5. The timing of these new ships pleased Raeder and his fellow admirals. They were due for completion in the summer of 1937; surely, by then, Germany would be in need of a larger and more powerful navy.


Deutschland in May 1933.

[1] The newest ships of the Kaiserliche Marine (Imperial Navy) were interned in Scapa Flow after the end of the Great War in 1919. Expecting his ships to be divvied up as war prizes among the Allies, Admiral Ludwig von Reuter ordered the entire fleet scuttled. With these intended prizes now sunk, the Allies seized Germany's remaining six dreadnoughts. This left Germany with just six aging pre-dreadnought battleships as her capital ships immediately after the war. By 1933, only three remained in service.

[2] Interestingly, as we have seen, this opposition virtually disappeared in the wake of the 1933 election.

[3] Admiral Scheer was named after Reinhard Scheer, an admiral in the Imperial Navy during the Great War and commander of the High Seas Fleet at the Battle of Jutland. Admiral Graf Spee commanded the Ostasiengeschwader (East Asian Squadron) and led his ships to victory at the Battle of Coronel. He later suffered a devastating defeat, and lost his life, at the Battle of the Falkland Islands.

[4] Raeder, like nearly all Nationalists and Nazis (and, indeed, a large number of Germans altogether), regarded the Treaty of Versailles as a diktat; that is, a forceful decree that is expected to be followed by those it is directed towards. It was viewed not only as a spiteful treaty on the Allies' part, but as a disgrace to Germany's honor as well.
 
Last edited: